8 Branding Tips for Your GivingTuesday Campaign

Lidia Varesco Racoma • Sep 24, 2021

GivingTuesday 2021 is fast approaching. Chances are you’ve started planning your campaign already. It takes a ton of administrative and organizational work to get an intense, 24-hour fundraising and awareness campaign off the ground and executed successfully, so starting as early as possible is a good idea. 

You’ve assigned tasks to your team, implemented a donor stewardship plan, and segmented your contact list so that your GivingTuesday email marketing strategy has the best chance of making an impact. Awesome!

But have you thought about how it’s all going to look?

One of the best things about GivingTuesday is that it’s unbranded—your nonprofit organization can make it look and feel however you want it to according to your needs and the preferences of your target audience. 

So, as you get closer to the first Tuesday after Black Friday (November 30, 2021), it’s time to start thinking about your organization’s GivingTuesday branding, which encompasses logos, colors, calls-to-action, messaging, style, and much more. 

Are you overwhelmed yet? Fear not, we’ve got you covered with eight handy tips to keep your GivingTuesday campaign branding, creative, consistent, and targeted.

1. Start with a Plan

The worst thing you can do for your branding is to improvise. 

Without a plan, when November 30 rolls around, your team will be scrambling to figure out what colors and fonts to use, which call-to-action (CTA) to put where, and which logo to emblazon on donation letters. So, be sure to plan ahead to keep everyone and every communication channel on the same page. 

Choose a name for your campaign (you can do better than “GivingTuesday Campaign 2021”), preselect imagery that can be used effectively on a variety of platforms. Write marketing copy, tagline, and talking points to be used wherever your team will be talking to your audience since writing thousands of emails from scratch is probably not in the cards for…anyone.

Get Ready for GivingTuesday with this FREE Content Calendar Trello Template

Use this free Trello template to plan your content strategy for GivingTuesday and keep your team aligned and on track.

2. Incorporate GivingTuesday Branding

While the GivingTuesday organization doesn’t put any restrictions on branding, they offer some of their own brand resources if you’d like to align yourself with the global movement in a consistent way (which you should). 

Consider using official GivingTuesday logos and colors in your fundraising materials—if you are a Canva user; they even provide templates with the right colors and fonts included. 

And probably the most high-profile part of GivingTuesday’s branding is the #GivingTuesday hashtag, which is the easiest and most recognizable way to be a part of the worldwide campaign. You can also use #unselfie to tag photos in your social media marketing materials.

3. Create a Unique Hashtag

In addition to #GivingTuesday and #unselfie, if you plan on having a strong social media presence on the big day, go ahead and create a GivingTuesday hashtag specifically for your nonprofit. Not only will it give you a chance of trending on your favorite platform, but it will also allow you to easily find all your posts during your GivingTuesday wrap-up and analysis.

Get a Handle on Your Social Media Marketing

Use this FREE Social Media Guide to create a social media branding and marketing strategy for your GivingTuesday campaign! 

4. Determine Your Communication Needs

Unless you’re part of an enormous organization, you probably don’t have the resources to activate every single communication channel on GivingTuesday. So part of your planning should be selecting which methods you’re going to use to communicate with your audience and then determine the materials and resources you need to utilize those channels to the fullest. 

Start by prioritizing anything that you can automate with your nonprofit customer relationship management (CRM) software, such as writing and scheduling your email marketing campaign ahead of time. 

Other considerations should include photo or video shoots, changes to your website or blog, and anything physical that needs to be printed or manufactured, like postcards or banners. If you need help, it can be highly advantageous to have a branding consultant assist with these types of tasks.

Lastly, part of this step should also be to set limits on how much communication material you will send out. Be careful not to send too much information to your followers, resulting in unsubscribes, unfollows, and lost donations. 

5. Tell Authentic Stories

The best way to ask for donations is to show people what their contributions can do. And the best way to achieve that is to tell them stories. Not made up, idealistic tales of fiction—real stories featuring actual people, imperfect stories filled with grit and pathos, even stories of failure. 

The goal is to connect the truth of your mission to the hearts and minds of your audience. You can also consider creating narrative content that outlines your organization’s journey from its earliest beginnings to the present. Need some examples to get you started? Here you go.

And don’t forget about staff stories! Be sure to show how your team is making an impact on GivingTuesday—and every day.

6. Create a Brand Guide

As you develop your GivingTuesday branding, it’s essential to document it so that it can be distributed to your staff, supporters, partners, board members, and other stakeholders. 

Be sure to create a brand guide that includes pertinent information like logos, colors, fonts, and messaging, laid out in an easy way for people to understand and put into practice. It’s also a good idea to create one that can be printed, even if your campaign is entirely digital since sometimes a sheet of paper is much easier to refer to in the heat of the moment.

Create a GivingTuesday Campaign that Stands Out

With this FREE GivingTuesday Brand Guide, you can develop a campaign that truly resonates with donors and learn marketing tips to position your campaign for success.

7. Be Consistent

It’s critical to your campaign that your branding is consistent across all platforms, no matter who is managing them. On GivingTuesday, if people see a consistent logo, hashtag, color palette, and imagery in multiple places, they are more likely to make a donation and stay involved. 

So make time to talk to your team about the importance of consistency in branding policies and how to execute your campaign flawlessly. This is also a great time to get feedback—if anything is unclear in your directions or brand guide, it’s better to know before the big day rolls around.

8. Measure Your Impact

To learn from your branding efforts and improve them for next year, you need to measure how your audience responds to your campaign. 

You can try A/B testing your marketing emails, select and track key metrics that reveal insights about your fundraising success, and even define key performance indicators that your team can use every year so you can track changes over time. Data is power!

Are you ready for GivingTuesday?

This complete campaign toolkit will help you set up donation pages, events, social media, and email campaigns and includes handy timelines and templates to keep you on track.

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About the Author:

Lidia Varesco Racoma
Art Director, Marketer, and Branding Expert at Lidia Varesco Design

Lidia is an experienced Art Director, Marketer, and Branding expert with over 20 years in the field. She is the founder of Lidia Varesco Design, as well as an active member of the Board of Directors at the Association of Consultants to Nonprofits where she is the Vice President of Marketing and Communications. Lidia’s focus is on clients and projects who are making a difference.